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HELPFUL DESIGN HINTS FROM STEVE AND RICH

Indoor Lighting Design

When designing indoor lighting for energy efficiency, you want to consider some basic design principles and methods.

Energy-efficient lighting design principles include the following:

·         Remember that more light is not necessarily better. Human visual performance depends on light quality as well as quantity.

·         Match the amount and quality of light to the performed function.

·         Install task lights where needed and reduce ambient light elsewhere.

·         Use energy-efficient lighting components, controls, and systems.

·         Maximize the use of daylight .

Here are some basic methods for achieving energy-efficient indoor lighting:

·         Install fluorescent light fixtures for all ceiling- and wall-mounted fixtures that will be on for more than 2 hours each day. These often include the fixtures in the kitchen and living room, and sometimes those in bathrooms, halls, bedrooms, and other higher-demand locations.

·         Install dedicated compact fluorescent fixtures, rather than compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) in incandescent fixtures, so that fluorescent bulbs continue to be used for the life of the house.

·         Use CFLs in portable lighting fixtures that are operated for more than 2 hours a day.

·         Use ENERGY STAR® labeled lighting fixtures.

·         Use Occupancy Sensors for automatically turning on and off your lights as needed.

·         Consider light wall colors to minimize the need for artificial lighting.

·         If recessed lights are used in a ceiling with an unconditioned space above it, use only Underwriters Laboratory (UL) approved fixtures that are airtight, are IC (insulation contact) rated, and meet ASTM E283 requirements.

 

Outdoor Lighting Design

outdoor lighting

When designing outdoor lighting, you need to consider the purpose of the lighting along with the basic methods for achieving energy efficiency. Outdoor lighting for homes generally serves one or a combination of three main purposes:

·         Aesthetics

Illuminate the exterior of the house and landscape.

·         Security

Illuminate the grounds near the house or driveway.

·         Utility

Illuminate the porch and driveway to help people navigate safely to and from the house.

Lighting Maintenance

Maintenance is vital to lighting efficiency. Light levels decrease over time because of aging lamps and dirt on fixtures, lamps, and room surfaces. Together, these factors can reduce total illumination by 50% or more, while lights continue drawing full power.

The following basic maintenance suggestions help keep your lights operating at their optimum energy efficiency:

·         Clean fixtures, lamps, and lenses every 6–24 months by wiping off the dust. However, never clean an incandescent bulb while it is turned on. The water's cooling effect will shatter the hot bulb.

·         Replace lenses if they appear yellow.

·         Consider group relamping. Common lamps, especially incandescent and fluorescent lamps, lose 20%–30% of their light output over their service life. Many lighting experts recommend replacing all the lamps in a lighting system at once. This saves labor, keeps illumination high, and avoids stressing any ballasts with dying lamps.

·         Clean or repaint small rooms every year and larger rooms every 2–3 years. Dirt collects on surfaces, which reduces the amount of light they reflect.


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